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What are the Benefits of Hiring a Home Security Service?
Many people may decide to forgo home security, or try to do it themselves. There are several specific reasons a homeowner should hire a professional security service.
- Home Protection – This is the most obvious reason to hire a home security service. The home, valuables, and family will be protected 24/7 whether anyone is home or not.
- Professional Installation – Homeowners may think it’s easy to install a system themselves. This, however, usually isn’t true. If even one part isn’t installed correctly, the system may not function at full capacity. Parts may even be damaged.
- Equipment Maintenance – Most home security companies will provide some sort of maintenance plan. This is essential to make sure all the parts of a system continue to work together effectively.
- Alarm Monitoring – Unless an individual is able to personally monitor a system 24/7, it’s important to hire a security service that is able to do this.
- Insurance Discounts – Many insurance companies will give homeowners a discount on home insurance if they have a professional home security system.
- Increase Home Value – If a person decides to sell their home after installing a home security system, this will likely increase the overall value of the home.
- Peace of Mind – Life provides enough reasons to worry. Home security doesn’t have to be one of them. An individual will have less stress knowing their home is protected.
What are Some Important Questions to Ask a Home Security Service Before Hiring or Committing to their Service?
There are several questions that a homeowner needs to ask before hiring a home security service.
- What Type of Equipment is Used? – A homeowner will want to do a little research beforehand to see what kind of equipment is available and what’s recommended. Find out if the company is using the most technologically advanced security equipment.
- What Type of Security is Offered? – Today there are a variety of systems to choose from. These can include alarm security, video surveillance, or complete automation with all the extras. Extras might include carbon monoxide or fire sensors. A homeowner needs to decide what they want or need in their home and ask if the company provides these systems.
- How Often Do They Check the Systems? – Monitoring the system means making sure all the components are in working order 24/7. It also means checking to make sure the home and everything that’s being monitored is protected.
- How Many Years Have They Been in Business? – A company that’s been in business a long time isn’t necessarily better than a new one, but it means they likely have the experience to handle a variety of security situations.
- Are They Licensed? – If a company is licensed that means they are operating within the required laws and regulations of the city or state as well as following the professional guidelines of the home security industry.
- Are There Warranties? – How long do they stand behind their services and the products they install? A good company should be able to provide at least a limited warranty.
- Is a Contract Required? – A homeowner should be hesitant about signing a contract. If one is signed, it’s crucial to read it entirely and know exactly what’s in it.
What Should You Expect When These Professionals Come to Your Home?
Some companies may not require an individual to even be at home when installation is taking place. It’s highly recommended, however, when something this important is being installed to remain at home. There are a few things a homeowner should expect when a home security professional visits the home. Some companies may want to examine the home before installing a system. Others may provide same-day installation services. A company should explain how they operate and what method they’ll use before making the first trip out to a home.
When the process finally begins, a homeowner can expect a wired installation to take considerably longer than a wireless installation. A wired system may take up to 8 hours to install while a wireless system might take half the time. A video surveillance system will usually take longer to install than just sensors and different types of keypad monitors. How much time it will eventually take will depend on the type of home and the specific system being installed.
After all the security is installed, a security professional should walk the homeowner through the steps of how to operate the system. They should take the time to answer any questions the homeowner has regarding how the system works. They should conduct a security experiment to make sure the equipment is in working order. Finally, the company should make sure the homeowner has all the necessary information to easily contact the company whether it’s for repairs, billing, or a specific security issue arises.
What Type of Training Do Home Security Professionals Receive?
There are basically four different positions in the home security business. There are managers and owners, salespeople, technicians, and the support personnel. Managers would run the business end of the service. Salespeople would make the initial contact and consult with homeowners. Technicians would install and complete maintenance on the security system. Support personnel would monitor the system, alert homeowners and law enforcement if necessary, and perform basic office tasks. While many of these individuals may have college degrees, this probably wouldn’t be required for these positions. Any of them may have degrees in business, computers, or a technology related degree.
The home security technician will need the skills to install and operate a variety of security devices. They would need to have a background or some level of training in electronics and electrical work. The technician would also need to understand the fundamentals of telephone wiring. They would need to understand and work with power sources in a home, voltages systems, and know how to install switches and relays. They would also need to be able to read blueprints and locate electrical systems in a home.
The licensing or certification requirements for individuals who work in this field can vary widely from state to state. On-the-job-training may be available, particularly in larger companies. Some states offer a low-voltage license for electricians while about half the states offer specialty certifications. Courses and training time can last anywhere from just a few weeks to several months. An individual interested in this profession should contact community and technical colleges in their area. It’s also necessary to see what security companies are requiring in their job applicants. Even if certain degrees and certifications are not legally required, an individual business may require the technicians they hire to hold specific degrees or have a particular license. The Electronics Technicians Association (ETA), the Electronics Security Association (ESA), and the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) each offer a variety of certifications in the security field.